Published by
Mt. Baker church of Christ
Bellingham, WA (1860 Mt. Baker HWY)
(360) 752-2692

Editor/Evangelist  Joe R. Price
Volume VII,  Number 45
April 25, 2004

"All material is written by Joe R. Price, unless otherwise noted."

Times of services:

Bible Classes............9:30 AM
Worship......10:30 & 6:00 PM
Bible Classes............7:00 PM

Elders:       Morris Bass
                 Rick Holt
                 Joe Price

Web sites:

"And take...the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God" (Eph. 6:17)

In this issue:

Can We Talk?
Joe R. Price

The ability to communicate is the difference between unified achievement and confusion.  The unfinished city and tower of Babel attest to the role communication plays in success or failure (Gen. 11:4-9).

Christians who cannot or will not talk to one another contribute to the weakening of the body of Christ.  Whether it is a kind word of encouragement needed by a fellow saint, a word of warning to beware of temptations and sin, a teaching of truth to the lost or a rebuke of sinful error, the inability to talk to each other hinders the strengthening and salvation of souls.  God’s word must be communicated so it can be heard and produce faith unto salvation (Rom. 10:8, 13-17). 

Can we talk without a spirit of superiority?  Sadly, some Christians convey an air of condescension when they talk with others.  Such ought not to be (Rom. 12:16; Phil. 2:3).  Rest assured, communication will be hindered where humility toward others is lacking.  How we say our words can have a much greater impact for good or evil that what we say.  You may have the truth, but if you display smugness or self-importance when you speak it, you will not communicate effectively.  Most likely, you will make it harder to be heard.

Can we talk with words that are gracious?  The apostle said, “Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one” (Col. 4:6).  To successfully talk with others we must speak with kindness, not rancor or malice.  “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” (Prov. 15:1).  Oh, how our marriages would profit by a “soft answer” instead of harsh and vindictive speech!  What strength would be garnered in a church where brethren live the timeless truth that “a word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver” (Prov. 25:11).  To do otherwise is a sinful use of the tongue (Jas. 3:9-10).

Can we talk to the lost about their souls?  The gospel will save, but it must be communicated to the lost to do so (Rom. 1:16; Mk. 16:15).  The word of God must be spoken to save souls from sin, not philosophies, not psychologies and not religious traditions (Col. 2:8).  We can speak the truth in love; the question is, will we?  (Eph. 4:15)


Dealing with God
Keith Greer

      Let us examine three ways in which man must “deal with God.”


      Waiting for God. “I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope.” {Psalm 130:5} What does it mean to wait for God? Quite simply, it means allowing things to work out according to God’s timetable and not one’s own.

      Sarah learned a hard lesson because she failed to “wait for God.” Abraham was 86, and it had been 11 years since God promised him an heir. Sarah was still barren. Instead of “waiting,” she decided to give God a hand. She gave Hagar to Abraham in order to raise up a child through her. Yes, Hagar conceived and bore Abraham a son whose name was Ishmael. But this was not the “child of promise.” That child would be Isaac who was born some 14 years later. Time did not matter to God, and He fulfilled His promise when He was ready—without help from Sarah and Hagar. If you read the history of Ishmael’s descendants, you’ll find that they became enemies of God’s people.

      We too must learn to “wait for God.” His timetable may be different from ours, but He knows what is best for us in our lives. This waiting requires that we have discipline, trust, and confidence in God and His ability.


      Walking with God. “After he begot Methuselah, Enoch walked with God three hundred years, and had sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.” {Genesis 5:22-24} How did Enoch walk with God? He lived his life according to the directions God gave him. This man humbly and reverently followed the course that God set before him. Why? One has to believe that Enoch had total trust in his knowledge that God’s ways were the best ways.

      “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” {Isaiah 55:8,9} Too many today try to “run ahead of God.” Walking with God exhibits confidence in His ways over our own. Divine wisdom is always the better course to pursue.


      Working for God. “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.” {Hebrews 11:7}

      Noah did not even know what rain was. Yet, when God instructed him to build the ark, he built it according to His instructions {Genesis 6:22}. When God told Joshua how to take the city of Jericho, he followed God’s instructions and the walls fell {Joshua 6}. What did Noah and Joshua have in common? Each understood the importance of following God and working His plan instead of his own.


      Dear reader, are you waiting for, walking with, and working for God? If one desires to have “good dealings” with God, he would do well to learn these three lessons. Trusting in and following God’s commands will always place a person in the best possible position to succeed. How do you “deal” with God?


Miracles in the New Testament
Joe R. Price

     The term “miracle” is used rather loosely today.  In the Bible a miracle was something beyond natural occurrence.  By definition, the word translated miracle “is used of works of a supernatural origin and character, such as could not be produced by natural agents and means....” (Vine’s, III:75)

     In Bible terms, a miracle is the supernatural intervention of divine power into the natural world (cf. John 6:19; 11:39, 43-44).  So for example, while the birth of a child is a marvelous wonder, it is not, by Biblical standards, a miracle.  A failure to properly define what is meant by “miracle” causes religious confusion over miracles.  Clear Bible facts will eliminate this confusion.

SIGNS, WONDERS AND POWERS (Acts 2:22; Hebrews 2:4)

  • SIGNS: Their design was to reveal the presence of God – John 3:1-2; 9:32-33
  • WONDERS: Their nature was to attract the attention of men, to cause astonishment – Acts 3:9-11
  • POWERS: Their origin was God – Acts 10:38; 3:12, 16


  • Produce belief that Jesus is the Christ – John 20:30-31; 5:36; 10:25, 38; 11:42; Matthew 11:2-6
  • Reveal the gospel to Christ’s apostles and prophets – John 16:13; Gal. 1:11-12; Ephesians 3:3-5
  • Divine confirmation of the gospel message – Mark 16:20; Hebrews 2:2-4


  • Jesus Christ – Matthew 4:23-24; Acts 2:22; 10:38
  • Those to whom Jesus gave the power – Matthew 10:1; Luke 10:1, 9, 17
  • The Apostles Of Christ – 2 Cor. 12:12 (baptized with the Holy Spirit, Lk. 24:49; Acts 1:5, 8; 2:1-4)
  • Christians On Whom Apostle Laid Hands To Impart Spiritual Gifts – Ac 8:14-18; 19:6; 2 Tim. 1:6


·         Until the death of those who had the power to work them. (The means of imparting miraculous spiritual gifts ceased when the apostles died.)

·         Until their purpose was fulfilled -- When the gospel was completely revealed and confirmed - 1 Corinthians 13:8-13; 2 Timothy 3:16-17

     Miracles served their purpose and came to an end with the completion of God’s revelation, the New Testament (1 Corinthians 13:8-10; Hebrews 1:1-2; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).  Divine miracles are recorded in the Bible for our benefit.  Through them our faith in Jesus Christ is strengthened and our confidence in the authenticity of the scriptures is secure.     (


You can find the complete outline of this sermon at BIBLE ANSWERS

Now that We Have Elders

Scripture Reading:  Acts 20:17-32

   With the appointment of elders here there has been an end and a beginning.  Some things have changed, some things have not changed, and some things will soon change.


  A.  The Organization of this Local Church has Changed – Phil. 1:1.
    1.  Previously, we were scripturally unorganized, & used men’s business meetings to make decisions for the church’s work – Acts 14:21-23.
    2.  God has placed the responsibility & accountability of oversight upon the elders – 1 Pet. 5:2; Heb. 13:17.
  B.  The Service of Oversight (Leadership) now Exists – 1 Pet. 5:2.
    1.  Feeding – Acts 20:28 (cf. Ezek. 34:2-3).
    2.  Watching – Heb. 13:17 (“to be sleepless, keep awake, watch; to be circumspect, attentive, ready”).  Call on elders to help, Jas. 5:14-15.
    3.  Protecting (defending) – Tit. 1:9-11; 1 Sam. 17:34-35; Acts 20:29-31.
    4.  Examples for the flock (heal…find & save…) 1 Pet. 5:3; Acts 20:32 (cf. Ezek. 34:4).
  C.  Members Who Willing Follow the Scriptural Rule of Elders – Heb. 13:7, 17.
    1.  The authority of elders:
      a.  Rule (Heb. 13:17):  “to lead, to go before, to have authority over.”
      b.  Shepherds (pastors, Eph. 4:11):  Shepherds lead, not the sheep.
      c.  Overseers:  Superintend, preside over (direct) (Acts 20:28).
      d.  Examples to be followed (1 Pet. 5:3).
      e.  According to the Scriptures – Acts 20:28-32.
    2.  A word of caution:  1 Tim. 5:19.
  D.  Accountability.
    1.  The elders (Heb. 13:17):  cf. Ezek. 34:5-10 (16-22; Jer. 23:1-2).
    2.  The church:  Esteem your elders; work with them – 1 Ths. 5:12-13.


  A.  Personal Responsibility of each Member to Continue in the Faith – Acts 14:22 (Matt. 25:19).
    1.  Personal responsibility of every member to…
      a.  Work & serve – Rom. 12:3-8 (Eph. 4:15-16).
      b.  Grow to maturity – Heb. 5:11-14 (2 Pet. 3:18).
      c.  Live morally – 1 Jno. 2:15.
      d.  Be vigilant – 1 Pet. 5:8 (Eph. 5:15-18; Acts 20:28-32).
  B.  We Still Face Tribulations as We Live for Heaven – Acts 14:22.
    -Having elders does not mean, “no more problems!” – cf. having apostles (Matt. 10:16-26).
  C.  Still have Mutual Care for Brethren – Phil. 2:2-4; Rom. 12:10 (Eph. 5:21).


  A.  The Appointment of Deacons – 1 Tim. 3:8-13.


     Having elders will not please God unless the elders & the church work together to do God’s work in God’s way – Eph. 4:1-3, 16.  By doing so, we glorify God!  (Eph. 3:20-21)


Created by Chuck Sibbing - 03/11/2009

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